"Drive" as written by and Ric Ocasek....
Who's gonna tell you when
It's too late
Who's gonna tell you things
Aren't so great
You can't go on
Thinking nothing's wrong
Who's gonna drive you home tonight

Who's gonna pick you up
When you fall
Who's gonna hang it up
When you call
Who's gonna pay attention
To your dreams
And who's gonna plug their ears
When you scream

You can't go on
Thinking nothing's wrong
Who's gonna drive you home tonight

Who's gonna hold you down
When you shake
Who's gonna come around
When you break

You can't go on
Thinking nothing's wrong
Who's gonna drive you home tonight

You know you can't go on
Thinking nothing's wrong
Who's gonna drive you home tonight


Lyrics submitted by Brock256, edited by Oxenbrigg

"Drive" as written by Ric Ocasek

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Drive song meanings
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63 Comments

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  • +13
    General CommentOK this song has a slightly different meaning for me.

    It's a one of the most beautiful and unique love songs ever.

    In a nutshell: anybody can love you when you're happy, but I'll love you when everything has gone wrong. I'll tell you the truth. I'll do what it takes to support you, even if it's hard for me.

    Put another way, this song is like the marriage vows - for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health.

    Who really loves you? The guy whose going to drive you home tonight.
    Sonofagunzelon August 13, 2008   Link
  • +7
    General CommentThis is one of the saddest songs ever to me. It always reminds me of being at the loneliest point in your life. To me it's being at a really horrible place in your life and on the verge of a breakdown and realizing that you're going to have to go through it alone and that there is no one there to help you. I think it's essentially about just being alone and having no one.
    JamiesCryingon May 31, 2004   Link
  • +6
    General CommentHaving used this website for a while, this song finally convinced me to get an account to express my comments. I'm rather reluctant with that sort of thing... I first heard this song in the early morning, the sky was a beautiful orange blue, and i was on my way to work in a 16 wheel truck. I work as a mover. Its at the end of summer, and school is starting but i've graduated and i'm not starting college for a year. The song, combined with the heavy manual labor i was about to do, really made me second guess taking a year off.... but its too late, as the song said, to change that and insted it made me really depressed. To me, this song is about realizing a mistake and theres no way to change, fix, or go back on it. Whats worse, theres no one there to know, help, or even feel sorry for you. You wanna tell someone but can't... for personal reasons or even not knowing where to begin. That all being said, i think we all need to experience that feeling sooner or later. Its a part of life.
    ArnhemKnight117on August 28, 2006   Link
  • +3
    General CommentFor me, "Drive" is about someone in a relationship with an alcoholic. I enjoyed listening to this song as a teenager, but I never would have imagined that well into my 30's it would hold so much meaning. It is a very sad song, which I can relate to hauntingly so. Every word describes exactly what I went through in a former relationship with an alcoholic. Ben Orr's voice brings out the helplessness that that writer felt...to which I can also relate to.
    rx8007on June 27, 2004   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI like this song because you can view it from both the singer's viewpoint and the viewpoint of the person being sung about.

    The singer has been doing all the things he talks about. Like trying to tell the person that things aren't so great, picking them up when they call, listening to their dreams, driving them home and trying to get them to see that their life needs to change. He's obviously in love with this person and would help out if he could.

    The other person is obviously self-destructive and probably addicted to drugs or alcohol and is usually in lots of trouble and their life is a mess. But they won't listen to the singer or they can't or won't change their life to stop the self-destruction.

    The singer really loves the other person, but can't put up with them destroying their life and his anymore. So the singer has to get out of the relationship because he just can't take the other person's self-destruction anymore. Plus the other person is not going to stop being self destructive until they deal with reality.

    The singer is saying "you have to change and I can't be there for you anymore until you do." He's really sad, and maybe telling the other person he's breaking up and can't be there for them. Or maybe he's imagining how things will be without him there to pick up the pieces.

    It's sad for everyone. Both the singer and the person who will be on their own, but can't stop destroying their own life and everyone else's around them.

    It's a beautifully simple song with a complex and emotional message in the lyrics.
    sbfisheron January 24, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentIt's a very sad, but very resigned song. There was love here, but it's gone. Whoever Ben is singing to is going to have to go it alone.
    Kimnon July 18, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis is not a complex song.It is essentially about a woman with baggage and her partner wanting her to address it.I read once long ago that Ric Ocasek had said not to look for really deep meanings in thier songs.It's just a love song but I never found it very sad.she has someone who loves her.That was more than I could've asked when I was at my lowest.
    cattyfaceon August 18, 2014   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationMy interpretation: This song is dedicated to someone who is having problems with drugs, alcohol, wild life... And he/she is being warned about the consequences of all of this and if you´ll ever find your saviour. In any case, the conclusion is that you can only really trust on yourself and change your habits if you don´t want to collapse.
    The sound is magic as many of the 80s tunes, and it's incredible how this music ages so well like the good wine. Maybe, nowadays there are less drug use than in the 80s, but thay are still there and the sense of alienation, depression and isolation is higher than in the 80s...Or just the same. This music will never die
    PeluCrespinson June 19, 2017   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI feel that this song is about a male to a female

    and the female and this male have an extensive long relationship

    and she has "problems"

    she is thinking about leaving him, and he is just like

    "who is going to put up with all of your complex traits?"

    because obviously he views her as being a wreck, and that he helps her to the best he can. and he is sad that she may leave him, and as much as that hurts him, it hurts him more to see her struggle on her own or with a male that will not understand her like he did.
    perplexionon March 15, 2007   Link
  • +1
    MemoryI've always had a hard time with this song, especially the line "You can't go on thinking nothing's wrong..."

    Whatever the reason, the man is saying that something serious happened.

    Since Ben Orr passed away, the song has a meaning to me outside of the video version. I had several relatives pass away around the same time, two of them with cancer. My relatives would tell me that everything would be okay, but I knew it wouldn't. Working in the medical profession, I see way too much sadness.

    Just reading this thread is enough to bring me to tears.
    lyricismon June 02, 2011   Link

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